Caponord out, Transalp in?
I have a dilemma. My trusty Capo is getting a bit long in the tooth and I'm considering trading in for a Transalp (nearly new). I need some advice from you lot out there, so here goes.
The Capo is a 2001 model, 22k miles and because of a strict regime of servicing it does go sweetly. It is comfy for two (my wife falls asleep on the pillion), has reasonable performance/consumption - but - the needles have fallen south on both the tacho and the speedo, the screen and plastics squeal at higher revs, and the transmission has backlash. I've just replaced the rear Tourance at £100 and the front brake lever switch flickers the brake light on and off inadvertently. The rear shock seems to be on its way out too. In all, a few minor irritating hassles but is it about to get worse - very much worse? Are the rumours about Aprilia Grenades true?
The Transalp is very new, but secondhand. The build standard is surprisingly poor in some respects but it all fits and goes quite well. The performance is obviously down on the Capo but one up will be fine for commuting as well as travelling (easier in the garage too). Some of our luggage will fit, and some won't, so there will be a cost there too to consider. We have used a Transalp in NZ with hard luggage all over, and we found it OK, reasonably comfortable, but a bit light on the front end when loaded. You have fun crossing those combined rail/road bridges with the narrow front wheel.
I stood the two bikes side by side. The Capo is a work of art in terms of the Alu welding, general finish, materials etc even if the style is not to everyone's taste. The Capo has a whole lot more of everything except reputation for reliability - and yet....
The Transalp will cost me the Capo and about £2200. But is it worth it? I feel I'll regret it the minute I do the deal, but will the Capo cost lots in the long run?
By the way, offroad the Capo is fine as long as the front is loaded, ie you stand on the pegs even on Tourance tyres. Staying seated or having a pillion is not fun. And the reason we had a Transalp in NZ is that the Beemer we were
using broke down, something the Capo hasn't yet done.